Reptile Day was a free, educational event open to the public featuring live reptiles and amphibians to see and touch. The animals were brought by herpetology enthusiasts with lots of experience in the hobby. Many questions were answered, including captive husbandry inquiries and information on native species was provided with a display, featuring several live native specimens. A questionnaire was offered to attendees. Not many filled it out, but we estimate that over 60 people attended the event. Our own Amy Hankins organized the event, congratulations to Amy and everyone involved.
2017 marks the centennial of America’s official involvement in the Great War, now known as World War I. On April 6, 1917, after the Zimmerman telegram was intercepted and made public, in which Germany proposed to support Mexico in its attempt to regain territory in the southwestern U.S., and after seven U.S. merchant ships were sunk by German torpedoes, the U.S. Congress declared war on Germany. Next Wednesday, April 5, at 6 p.m. in the Fox Theater, owned and operated by the History Museum on the Square, Dr. Jay Winter, the Charles J. Stille Professor of History at Yale, and a noted and prolific scholar on the War to End all War, will be speaking about the revolution of violence during World War I. This event is organized and funded primarily by the Springfield-Greene County Library District, with support from the MSU Libraries and other cultural organizations.
Last Thursday evening the Ozark Jubilee Digitization Project was officially launched by a public event held at the University Plaza Hotel, in conjunction with the Missouri Conference on History, organized by the State Historical Society of Missouri. Over sixty people attended the event, which lasted over an hour longer than anticipated, because audience members had so many questions to ask and memories to share. Last Thursday also was the launch of the YouTube Channel for these amazing recordings of live, nationally broadcast television broadcasts emanating primarily from the Jewell Theater in downtown Springfield. One 30-minute episode (June 16, 1955) already is online (and has received over 60 views already). On Monday the UCLA Film and Television Archive notified the MSU Libraries that nine more episodes have been digitized and are ready to be uploaded. Keep Watching the Ozark Jubilee!
Over Spring Break, MSU Networking Telecommunications performed an upgrade of the wireless networking (Wi-Fi) infrastructure in Meyer Library. They replaced 57 existing 802.11n access points (APs) from Juniper Systems with 802.11ac Wave 2 APs from Aruba Wireless, and added an additional ten new APs to increase coverage and improve service density, including seven on the first floor. These new access points should be able to handle 2-3 times the number of clients as the previous solution from Juniper, which means faster, more reliable connections for end-users. No change to your current configuration is necessary to take advantage of this new network. If you were connected to the wireless network in Meyer Library before Spring Break, you should still be able to access it today. Nevertheless, Wi-Fi deployments of this size are difficult to get right on the first try (physics!), so be sure to let LIT know if you, or any patrons, experience difficulties accessing the wireless network, or significant decreases in network signal strength, so we can work with Networking and Telecommunications to resolve them.
Last week the New Media Consortium (NMC) released its Horizon Report > 2017 Library Edition. Seventy-seven experts in academic and research libraries, information technology, higher learning trends, and related fields pooled their knowledge and expertise to produce the report. Quoting from the press release, “Six key trends, six significant challenges, and six developments in technology profiled in this report are poised to impact library strategies, operations, and services with regards to learning, creative inquiry, research, and information management. The three sections of this report constitute a reference and technology planning guide for librarians, library leaders, library staff, policymakers, and technologists.” One of the short-term trends in valuing the user experience, and two of the mid-term trends are rethinking library spaces and patrons as creators.
MOBIUS has been awarded the opportunity to host and manage the 2018 Evergreen International Conference. Our proposal was chosen by the Evergreen Site Selection Committee in late Feb. The venue will be the St. Charles Convention Center. The Evergreen Project develops an open source ILS (integrated library system) used by approximately 1,800 libraries around the world. The software, also called Evergreen, is used by libraries to provide their public catalog interface as well as to manage back-of-house operations such as circulation (checkouts and checkins), acquisition of library materials, and (particularly in the case of Evergreen) sharing resources among groups of libraries. The dates of the conference have not yet been set.
Yesterday the MSU Libraries entered into an agreement with MSU Planning, Design, and Construction (PD&C) to begin a process to develop a fully articulated plan, with cost estimates, for a new signage system in Meyer Library. PD&C agreed to work closely with the Libraries to articulate our needs, explore options, and develop a plan. Dean Peters informed PD&C that the Libraries already has a Signage Task Force in place that will become active again. Members include Mark Arnold, Jessica Bennett, Jir Shin Boey, Nathan Neuschwander, Jeffrey Lawson, and Tom Peters (Chair).
Several people have asked about attending our screening of a 30-minute segment of the April 16, 1955 episode of the Ozark Jubilee on Thursday evening, March 23rd (tonight!), from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. at the University Plaza Hotel in Springfield MO, as part of the Missouri Conference on History. You do NOT need to register for the entire conference. You may simply RSVP at no cost for this evening event. Wayne Glenn (The Old Record Collector), Kaitlyn McConnell (OzarksAlive.com), who recently published an excellent essay about the Ozark Jubilee, and Tom Peters (MSU Dean of Libraries), who is writing a book about the Ozark Jubilee, will lead a discussion after the viewing. Here’s a link to the free online RSVP form. So, shout up the chimney to call the cows home and come on over to this screening.
Kevin Wilson, Testing Technician in the MSU Testing Center, operated by the MSU Libraries, recently was named Bear Connection’s March 2017 Mentor of the Month! Kevin has played a significant role in the success of the Bear Connection mentoring program and this recognizes his dedication and commitment to helping fellow staff members at the University. “The mission of Bear Connection is to build relationships between new staff members and ambassadors in an effort to enhance the onboarding process and foster a unique personalized experience.” Kevin also is a member of the University Staff Ambassadors (USA) Class of 2014. We’re proud to have Kevin as part of our team!
This week, new, improved shelving for Special Collections and Archives arrived and began to be installed. When the installation and loading of the new shelving is completed this summer, it will enable us to store more materials in the same amount of space. Over the past twenty years, the storage area of Special Collections and Archives has become quite full with content. The MSU Libraries thanks Library Dean Emeritus Karen Horny for her gift that enabled this new archival shelving to be purchased.